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Ambacht in Beeld Festival
30 & 31 March 2024
Brussels - Tour & Taxis Gare Maritime

| Cut your own wooden mortise pin

Het MOT - Museum voor de Oudere Technieken -

Cut your own wooden mortise pin on the cutting horse at the MOT stand. Such a wooden mortise pin is used in craftsmanship to pull together wooden joints.


Vakwerk is a historical predecessor of the current timber frame construction. A vakwerk building is constructed from a wooden construction of vertical posts, horizontal beams and diagonal braces. The walls of this ‘skeleton’ consist of a wickerwork of flexible twigs or split slats covered with a mixture of loam and straw.


For centuries, vakwerk was the most important construction method in Flanders and was technically a good alternative to brick and natural stone. But because it requires more maintenance than a stone structure, vakwerk was hardly used from the beginning of the twentieth century.


Knowledge and skills necessary for the construction of craftsmanship were once widespread. Training took place on site and there are very few manuals for timber framing. When vakwerk construction began to decline, technical knowledge slowly but surely disappeared.


To do something about this, the MOT created the Vakwerk in Beeld project. In this project we constructed vakwerk buildings in a traditional manner, using only natural materials and the use of muscle power. The entire technical process was captured on film and published on and YouTube. The knowledge about vakwerk construction is also passed on through workshops and internships. In this way we want to encourage people to rediscover vakwerkconstruction based on tradition.

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